DUDLEY Sports boss Tony Gore proved much more upbeat this week despite his side's 3-1 defeat at Cradley Town.

Gore insisted: "There were plenty of positives to take from the game. We competed throughout and we were unfortunate that some key decisions went against us."

Sports came close to shocking Cradley when Romano Graham fired against the post in the opening minute.

Just two minutes later Graham broke through again but this time was brought down by Darren Whitley who escaped with a yellow card.

Graham got up to score from the resulting penalty at the second attempt after Cradley goalkeeper Richard Kennedy saved his initial shot.

Gore said: "I thought the foul was a sending off offence and not a yellow card. I chatted with the referee at half time and he thought Whitley had made a genuine attempt to take the ball."

The irony was that Whitley was later sent off on the hour for again bringing down Graham when through on goal.

By that stage Cradley were 2-1 up through goals from T J Munthali and Garfield Robinson.

Gore admitted: "We had two or three players in the side who haven't played much football recently and they began to tire towards the end of the game but it was still a pleasing performance".

Gore brought in defender McCauley Wright for only his second game while Tyler Anderson also featured for the first timne after two substitute appearences.

Gore has also brought in the pacey Josh Harris-James on loan from Worcester City and said: "He hasn't played much football of late, but he worked really hard before tiring and will only get better".

Gore hopes to have Joe Wilcox back on board for their local derby with next to bottom Dudley Town at Hillcrest Avenue this Saturday.

Gore revealed: "We've already got an eight point cushion over Dudley Town and if we can stretch that to 11 on Saturday, then that's going to take an awful lot of clawing back.

"Obviously you look to beat teams who are below you and this is definitely not a game to lose."